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Artisan Rugmaker Blends Luxury and Sustainability with Alpaca Wool Creations

The Ceadogán studio has been two years creating a nature sanctuary and 

alpaca farm to provide the raw materials for their latest collection


Artisan rugmakers Ceadogán enlisted the help of 12 of Ireland's most famous artists to create an alpaca farm at their studios in Co. Wexford. Image Caolán Barron

"Neadaithe," meaning "nested" as gaeilge, serves as the title for an exquisite new collection of handmade rugs, cushions and wall hangings that fuse luxury design with sustainability in a novel way. The new range is by artisan rugmakers Ceadogán and is the inaugural line of products crafted from their un-dyed homegrown wool following a two year project to establish an alpaca farm and nature sanctuary at the company’s studios in Bannow Bay, Co. Wexford. 


A second-generation family business, Ceadogán is renowned for its stunning hand-tufted rugs that combine traditional craftsmanship with contemporary design. In early 2022, Co-Directors Martina Navrátilová and Colm Kenny founded ‘For the Birds,' an ambitious regenerative project aimed at transitioning their business to become fully eco-friendly and sustainable. 


To secure the necessary funding for the project, the team sought the assistance of 12 of Ireland’s most prominent visual artists, including Sean Scully, Doherty Cross, and Gottfried Helnwein. These artists created unique custom-designed rugs which were successfully auctioned off, generating the funds needed for the project. Half of the profits were donated to the Peter McVerry Trust.

 

“The charitable rug auction provided the seed funding to create an ecosystem that supports thriving wildlife” explains artistic director Martina Navrátilová. “We have introduced a herd of alpacas with three paddocks for rotational grazing. A large pond was constructed using water from the spring well, and various bird nesting boxes, including those for barn owls, have been installed. Our focus extends beyond just achieving sustainability; we wanted to make a genuinely positive impact on the environment. It has all happened so fast, we’re excited to see what summer brings”.


Driven by a commitment to creating traceable homegrown materials without compromising on luxury or quality, the Neadaithe collection stands as the first products utilising the homegrown wool from the alpaca farm:


“The initial wool clippings were gathered and processed to create natural, undyed yarns'', explains Ceadogán co-director Colm Kenny, “on further development, a second set of Irish alpaca fleece was combined with fleece from the heritage Galway sheep, resulting in a blend that offers both the strength and durability of the sheep's fleece along with the softness and luxury of the alpaca. This range is truly exceptional, and also features a new line of deluxe cushions. The covers are crafted using Irish linen, filled with fleece, and adorned with tufts made from the alpaca and Galway yarns, complete with buttons made from wind-fallen hornbeam. Attention to detail is paramount for us, we want to make items that will be enjoyed for generations”.


Neadaithe, the new collection by Ceadogán is available to view on the company’s website or by appointment at their studios in Barrystown, Wellingtonbridge, Co. Wexford. Prices range from €240-€3250 across a range of cushions, rugs and wall hangings. For further information see: www.ceadogan.ie


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